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Experiments of Topologically Active Polymers


School of Physics

About the Project

I am looking for a motivated PhD with interests in polymer and soft matter physics. The ideal candidate should have knowledge of experimental techniques such as light microscopy and preparation of samples. Expertise in experimental DNA biophysics would be a major advantage. The project associated to this position mostly involves micro-rheology experiments of “topologically active polymers”.

The successful candidate will be part of a group of about 6 people with broad and diverse expertise in both computational and experimental biophysics (https://www2.ph.ed.ac.uk/~dmichiel/). The experimental part comprises half of the group and simulations will be carried on alongside experiments to provide mechanistic models. This project also involves close collaborations with international groups and the position comes with generous freedom and funding for research and travel expenses.

The PhD will be studying within the Institute of Condensed Matter and Complex Systems (ICMCS, http://www.ph.ed.ac.uk/icmcs), one of the best groups in the world for soft matter research (both theoretical and experimental). The student will also have the opportunity to interact with a large cohort of PhDs embedded within the “Soft Matter and Functional Interfaces” (SOFI) Centre for Doctoral Training (https://www.dur.ac.uk/soft.matter/soficdt/about/). The University of Edinburgh is ranked 20th among the top universities in the world (https://www.topuniversities.com/university-rankings/world-university-rankings/2021) and the town is itself a very lively place for post-graduate students.

Students are expected to hold a 2.1 Hons degree or above, or equivalent, in physics, chemistry or a related discipline. A Master’s degree in one of the above fields would be advantageous. Since the project includes a mix of numerical and experimental research on soft matter and DNA biophysics, a background in either simulations or experiments and willingness to learn the other are strongly recommended.


Potential applicants should contact Davide Michieletto for more information.

Funding Notes

Due to funding restrictions only UK/EU students are eligible to apply. The position will be funded by an ERC grant, fees will be covered and a tax-free stipend of £15,285 will be paid for 42 months. Students are expected to hold a 2.1 Hons degree or above, or equivalent, in physics, chemistry or a related discipline. A Master’s degree in one of the above fields would be advantageous. Applications should be made using the link below:

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